Powerful Costa Rica Yoga Retreat Testimonial

Powerful Costa Rica Yoga Retreat Testimonial

How many times do you see a description of a yoga retreat deemed “transformative” and “life changing?”

Let’s be honest, unless the retreat is specific to deep personal work, aimed towards a spiritual path or incorporated into a well established program, it won’t and shouldn’t claim to be transformative.

Early on, Ewa and I  thought about the kind of market we wanted to cater to and what kind of retreat we wanted to create at Blue Osa.

We decided something fun, light and vacation-like was best suited for our collaboration and style during our last Happy New You! Yoga Retreat.

Click here to see more of a typical day on the retreat.

Happy New You Yoga Retreat Testimonial Valentina Rose Blog Costa Rica Temple Ritual
Photo Credit: Jonathan Hokklo


We were both amazed, however, at how powerful our last yoga retreat turned out to be for one of our participants.

While we all had a grand time, and will always remember this week as very meaningful, for some of us the week turned out to have deeper effects.

In all of my yoga career, this is the most powerful feedback I have ever received. I am honored to have been part of this positive transformation, and hope for many more to come.

This feed back is also an important reminder that even from fun, simple and lighthearted times deeper transformation can occur.

We are keeping this post anonymous for privacy reasons.


“Hi Ewa and Valentina,

Just wanted to check in and say hello!  I miss you guys!  I can’t believe it’s been one month since our fire/lantern ceremony and super fun night at Martina’s.  In some ways, the time has gone by so quickly and in other ways, mainly because I feel so different, it seems like a really long time ago. 

In the last month, I’ve found myself reflecting so much on how much the yoga retreat has meant to me.  I really believe in synergy and life alignment – and I believe that there was something out there directing us all to Blue Osa this year.  Coming to a yoga retreat is (or, probably more correctly, was) a bit out of my comfort zone, but the internet help us find the two of you and I am so much better for it.

Although this sounds like a serious email, the retreat was PURE JOY, FUN AND PLAY and I think that this is what caused (somehow imperceptibly) this big change in me.  During the week, I became re-connected with my physical self.  I like to thing that I’m fairly in touch with my emotional self (we do a lot of work on that in the field of work that I’m in), but during this process I think I became a bit stuck in my head and disconnected from the rest of me.  During the retreat, through yoga and surfing and swimming and trying handstands and doing cartwheels, I remembered what it felt like to be in touch with me.  Throw in some delicious, whole, and fresh food, great conversations, and new friendships, and I do feel like a new me.

More than that, since coming home, this feeling has grown and developed further rather than faded.  And I think there’s been positive feedback on my mental/emotional self through this connection.  I’m happier and more content, confident, and willing to be vulnerable in relationships and try new things.  I’ve been doing lots of yoga – I finally joined the studio that I having been thinking about joining for years, but was a bit afraid to commit to because I didn’t think I was fit or good enough.  I’ve been cooking more, sleeping better, and taking more time for myself and the relationships that are super important to me. 

I’ve been trying to journal a bit and this is the type of private thing I might write in there, but I also thought it was so important for the two of you to know the impact of the retreat.  I believe that lives of people often cross paths at just the right time, when you’re open and willing to recognize these moments.  That’s how I feel about you.  

So thank you for being just as you are, being brave enough to organize retreats like this, and opening your heart me and all of us!”


Happy New You Yoga Retreat Testimonial Valentina Rose Blog Costa Rica Tadasana
Photo Credit: Jonathan Hokklo


Are you ready for our next retreat?

Happy New You 2016!

December 28th 2016- January 3rd 2017

Sansara Yoga Retreat

Cambutal, Panama


5 Ways to Go Back to Normal Life After your Costa Rica Yoga Retreat

5 Ways to Go Back to Normal Life After your Costa Rica Yoga Retreat

Going on the Happy New You! Yoga Retreat was exhilarating, eventful, fun-filled, exciting, relaxing, insightful  and overall a splendid way to change our routines, step away from patterns and enter a new way of life.


But how do we go back to our normal lives after experiencing such bliss, you ask?


All photos by Jonathan Hokklo


How to Return Back to Normal Life After your Costa Rica Yoga Ewa and Valentina Yoga Instructors


Some of us are returning to cold weather climates, most of us are returning to work, to duties, to things to do, problem solving, and sleeping less.


Here are five ways to maintain healthy habits even after you return from your yoga retreat.


1.Create Structure and Consistency In Your Life


How to Return Back to Normal Life After your Costa Rica Yoga Retreat Blue Osa Yoga Studio Temple


During the yoga retreat we went by a pretty structured schedule, with our 7am yoga class, followed by breakfast, the 10am yoga class, followed by lunch and then some rest before the last yoga class of the day.


While your real life schedule is almost guaranteed to not look like that, you can still ensure to have routines.


Give yourself plenty of time to wake up and ease into your day before heading out the door. 


Make  tea/coffee, and take the first 10/20 minutes of your day for something that serves YOU. You may journal, read the news, check your personal emails, read your book, eat cookies, or even do social media. (yes, you are allowed). The point isn’t so much WHAT you do, but the fact that you are taking time for yourself as a small gift of self- indulgence before the daily grind begins. Do all these things preferably in silence.


Honor the new day with a good start, so that the rest of the day is already more likely to continue on that note.


Try not to rush but prepare for the tasks ahead so that you feel confident and ready to focus.


When you can be still and grounded from the inside, you will be able to carry that feeing with you no matter where you are or how much you travel.


2. Enforce Enough Sleep


How to Return Back to Normal Life After your Costa Rica Yoga Retreat Blue Osa Yoga Pete the Chocolate Labrador


During the yoga retreat we all got lots of rest. Most of us went to bed early, and then got plenty of naps. No matter what your sleeping preferences are, you want to ensure and commit to getting enough sleep every night.


8 hours is good, 9 hours is ideal, 7 hours ok okay. Any less than that, especially when occurring several days in a row should be a warning that you need to slow down.


Sleep is incredibly important for a healthy functioning of our minds and body. When rested, we are able to function better, think more clearly and be more productive.


Most of the time late at night, we are procrastinating and not being productive. Decide on a bed time for each day and stick to it. 


3. Channel Your Healthy Chef


How to Return Back to Normal Life After your Costa Rica Yoga Retreat Blue Osa Yoga At the Dinner Table Healthy Farm to Table Eating


While we all indulged with the Blue Osa desserts and the second trips to the buffet, most of us felt lucky to be served fresh vegetables and fruit daily. Said ingredients were being incorporated in creative salads, soups, smoothies and other meals. While it takes time to prepare vegetables and cut up fruit, remember it doesn’t have to be intricate.


For breakfast, you can cut up a cantaloupe and eat the whole thing.


For lunch, you can slice a few tomatoes, add some olives, lettuce, feta cheese -optional 😉 good olive oil,  and you got yourself a delicious salad that takes less than 5 minutes to make.


For dinner you can cook a piece of fish in the pan and sauté some spinach.

Remember: less is more, and quality is usually preferable over quantity.


4. Establish Your Yoga practice, On And Off Your Mat


How to Return Back to Normal Life After your Costa Rica Yoga Retreat Blue Osa Yoga Class with Ewa giving Adjustment


Whether you were already an avid practitioner or a minty beginner, take this opportunity of being back from your retreat to revise your yoga practice, how often you practice, where, with who and what types of yoga.


If you’re new to yoga, try out a few different studios before committing to one. If you already have a yoga studio membership you might feel inspired to try out different styles of classes.


Also don’t forget that “doing yoga” doesn’t limit itself to walking into a class and doing the postures.


Yoga, in an energetic and spiritual sense, is practiced daily in lots of other forms. A walk in nature for example is a great way to reconnect to your “prana”, your energy force, and rekindling with the elements, the sounds, spending alone time or just practicing sitting are forms of meditation as well.


Being mindful and self-reflective, becoming aware of your thought patterns, the way you speak and enacting kindness, IS a form of yoga.


5. Reflect On Your Social Behavior

How to Return Back to Normal Life After your Costa Rica Yoga Cute Monkey on a Branch


When we travel we tend to become a lot more outgoing and open to socializing. That’s because we feel a bit more vulnerable, a bit more humble, and a bit more willing to talk to strangers.


In our daily lives however, we tend to go by the I-already-have-my life-I-already-have-my-friends-so-why-should-I-talk-to-you-when-I am-busy mode.


Truth is, there are never enough great people that can enrich our lives. And when you start to smile to people, greet them enthusiastically and strike conversations, door will open in ways that might surprise you 🙂


What To Pack For Your Costa Rica Yoga Retreat

What To Pack For Your Costa Rica Yoga Retreat

Keep in mind that Costa Rican life lends itself to a simple life. The most famous expression in Costa Rica is “Pura Vida” which translates to “Pure Life”. Pura Vida reminds us to remain simple and light in life. The weight of life can be cumbersome and drag us down.


For this reason, the list of things you need to bring to Costa Rica to enjoy your vacation is small and light.


Traveling light allows you more freedom to move from place to place more effortlessly without the mental burden of worrying about your stuff on your journey.





1. Passport – This might be obvious, but make sure your passport is current and up to date. Your passport must have at least 6 months validity. (There is NO visa required to travel to Costa Rica.)

If you are entering Costa Rica from South America, you will be required to show proof of having a yellow fever vaccination.


2. Money – bringing some cash is great, but you can use your credit cards at Blue Osa Yoga Retreat + Spa (they accept Visa, Mastercard, and Discover).

Keep in mind you do NOT need to exchange currency when you get to the airport. American dollar is widely used in Costa Rica and the airport exchange fees are not favorable.

We recommend bringing about $500 or less and bringing lots of small bills for easier currency exchange and small store change. You will need cash when taking taxis around San Jose, buying from local markets, tipping tour guides, eating out.

Keep in mind you do NOT need to exchange currency when you get to the airport. American dollar is widely used in Costa Rica and the airport exchange fees are not favorable.


3. Tooth brush and toothpaste –  if you forget yours of these items can be easily purchased anywhere. Body wash will be provided.




4. Yoga mat – we suggest your bring your yoga mat but if you can’t because you want to travel light you may rent one at Blue Osa for $30 for the week. 100% of the proceeds for yoga mats go to Blue Osa’s community outreach projects.


5. Clothing  – 2 or 3 pairs of shorts/ yoga leggings, 3 or 4 tank tops. Favor light and breezy clothing, things you would be okay getting wet.


6. Shoes  – Sandals/flips flops, and a pair of old sneakers – you do not need a lot of footwear.  Old sneakers are for hiking in waterfalls and in the jungle. Expect for your shoes to get wet and not dry fully before you departure. Sturdy shoes are essential for any adventures. High heels are not recommended.





7. Warmer clothing – bring a pair of long pants and a long sleeve shirt to wear on your flight to San Jose, Costa Rica. At certain times of the year, the nights in San Jose can get quite cool. Also, if you plan to take a side trip to the mountains before or after your yoga retreat or go horse back riding, you will definitely want some more coverage.


8. Journal and pen – optional.  A powerful practice in yoga is to take the time to journal your thoughts, ideas, dreams and goals.  You will receive invaluable insights from this practice.


9. Bathing suit – essential for the beach.





10. You DO NOT need to bring a beach towel. Blue Osa Yoga Retreat + Spa, as well as most hotels, provide these.


11. A camera/binoculars – you never know what whales might be breaching in the distance, monkeys might be swinging from the trees, or interesting birds you might want to capture.


12. Underwear and socks – pack as as much as you think you need, then return 75% back to the sock/underwear drawer.


13. Flashlight –  an essential part of your vacation to Costa Rica. Blue Osa is an eco-resort, and as such has low lighting at night. Having a flashlight ensures that you will be able to find your way around without stepping on any creatures that may be on the path.




14. Sunscreen – Another essential item for your vacation to the tropics. Sunscreen is readily available in most stores in Costa Rica, as well as the Blue Osa boutique.


15. Water bottle – to stay hydrated during yoga, at the pool, and anywhere you go. We recommend stainless steel water bottles like Klean Kanteen or Swell.


16. Bug spray – For dusk mostly, the time when mosquitoes tend to come out, you want to preferably have some natural bug repellent.


17. Sunglasses and hat – to protect you from the sun. if you have expensive sunglasses you might want to opt for something a little cheaper that won’t get ruined. Same thing goes for watches and jewelry.


18. Books  Once settled in the resort you’ll find it is really enjoyable to lay on a hammock or by the pool pavilion and immerse yourself in a great novel. Blue Osa also has a small shelf of book trades in case you finish your reads and want to keep going.




19. Spare the makeup – you’ll rarely enjoy wearing makeup in Costa Rica. The humid and warmer climates can make it uncomfortable and literally melt it off your face.


20. Leave your blow dryers at home – most hotels and resorts provide hair dyers, however, those types of electronics are NOT allowed at Blue Osa because the solar generated power system cannot handle the voltage.


21. Electronics and chargers  outlets in Costa Rica look the same as the ones in the U.S. You will be able to change your phones/tablets/cameras in your rooms at Blue Osa. Please note that Wifi is provided in the lobby area but not through the whole property.